Songs with Astronomical Themes No. 10: “Harvest Moon”

Today in honor of the harvest moon, No. 10 in our Songs with Astronomical Themes series is, of course, “Harvest Moon.”


What’s a harvest moon, you ask?

A harvest moon is a full moon occurring closest to the autumnal equinox, when night and day are equal length, usually in late September. Because it rises soon after sunset, the moon gives farmers extra light for harvesting.

This first song is a rendition of “Shine On, Harvest Moon” (1908), recorded by Milton Brown and his Musical Brownies in 1935:

And here’s one you might be more familiar with, Neil Young’s terrific “Harvest Moon,” from 1992. In fact, you should probably skip that first one and just listen to this: